(ORDO NEWS) — Comet C / 2020 F3 was first discovered on March 27, 2020 using the NEOWISE telescope (The Near Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer), which gave it a second name. Unlike ATLAS, which could have become the brightest comet in 13 years, but collapsed under the influence of the Sun, NEOWISE has experienced a rapprochement with the Star and is now becoming brighter.
“From her infrared signature, we can say that it is about 5 kilometers across <…> The NEOWISE core is covered with dark soot particles that have survived from her birth 4.5 billion years ago,” – Joseph Macerio, Deputy Principal Investigator, NEOWISE.
The comet can be observed in the Northern Hemisphere from the equator to the 60th parallel of northern latitude. In Russia, this is the entire territory south of St. Petersburg. From the Earth, a comet can now be seen shortly before dawn above the northeastern horizon of the sky. Every day, her appearance in the sky will shift closer to midnight, and after July 20 she will be visible in the evening and in the first half of the night.
Comet NEOWISE from ISS, July 5th pic.twitter.com/pAbGdtchAc
— Seán Doran (@_TheSeaning) July 7, 2020
The best conditions of visibility will develop around July 20, when NEOWISE enters the constellation Ursa Major with a brilliance of +3 magnitude. With such luminosity with the naked eye, the comet will be visible as a faint spot: in order to better examine its tail, you need at least a little binoculars. Each week, NEOWISE will lose approximately 1.3 magnitude and will no longer be visible to the naked eye after August 5th.
I have a strong dislike of early mornings—but so worth it today because wow is that comet beautiful! C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) I was at Sunset Crater by 4AM. It was an easy naked-eye object, but really rewarding through binoculars. Last pic is closest to naked eye scale.#neowise pic.twitter.com/1I0Cx2fZQJ
— Jeremy Perez (@jperez1690) July 5, 2020
At a minimum distance from the Earth, the comet will be held on July 23. It will be 0.692 astronomical units, or 103.52 million kilometers. This will provide astronomers with a great opportunity to learn more about its composition and structure. Next time NEOWISE will visit the solar system in 6800 years.
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